The Trio Presidency was established in 2007, following a Decision by the European Council, according to which the Union's Member States are divided in groups of three consecutive rotating Presidencies of the Council of the EU, which form the Trio . The aim of the Trio is to achieve continuity and consistency in the work of the Council of the EU, and also to allow the three Member States, to achieve greater cooperation and exchange of expertise.
During the 18month period of each Trio Presidency, a common programme, known as the Common 18month Programme of the Trio Presidency is prepared and published, which includes the thematic areas that will be addressed by the Trio Presidencies.
The order in which the Member States shall hold the Presidency of the Council, as adopted by the Council in 2007, and which established the groups of Member States that form the Trio Presidencies, is as follows:
|Germany||January - June||2007|
|Portugal||July - December||2007|
|Slovenia||January - June||2008|
|France||July - December||2008|
|Czech Republic||January - June||2009|
|Sweden||July - December||2009|
|Spain||January - June||2010|
|Belgium||July - December||2010|
|Hungary||January - June||2011|
|Poland||July - December||2011|
|Denmark||January - June||2012|
|Cyprus||July - December||2012|
|Ireland||January - June||2013|
|Lithuania||July - December||2013|
|Greece||January - June||2014|
|Italy||July - December||2014|
|Latvia||January - June||2015|
|Luxembourg||July - December||2015|
|Netherlands||January - June||2016|
|Slovakia||July - December||2016|
|Malta||January - June||2017|
|United Kingdom||July - December||2017|
|Estonia||January - June||2018|
|Bulgaria||July - December||2018|
|Austria||January - June||2019|
|Romania||July - December||2019|
|Finland||January - June||2020|
According to the Council Decision of 1 December 2009 on laying down measures for the implementation of the European Council Decision on the exercise of the Presidency of the Council and on the chairmanship of preparatory bodies of the Council, article 3, the order in which the Member States will hold the Presidency as from 1 July 2020 shall be decided by the Council, before 1 July 2017.
It is also important that according to the Rules of Procedure of the Council, the six-monthly Presidency shall be assisted in all its responsibilities by the other members of its Trio, on the basis of the 18month programme or pursuant to other arrangements agreed between them.